Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Evel Knievel: Still Dead (2010 Edition)

Evel died three years ago today; here's some stuff that happened over the past year in the Knievel Universe...

Probably the most public display of Evelness was by Stephen Colbert, who wore a Knievel getup at the October Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear... Also in October, Dax Shepard's character wore an Evel costume on the Halloween episode of Parenthood...

No, that's not Dax Shepard -- it's a monkey dressed as Evel for a Dodge commercial. However, PETA complained, so Dodge digitally erased the little guy from the ad, resulting in an invisible monkey... Evel himself appeared in some old footage used in a GM commercial, which aired last week during a Thanksgiving NFL game. In it we see Evel helped to his feet after his Wembley Stadium crash, a visual metaphor of the government's General Motors bailout. Deep.

At the movies, Ryan Dunn attempted a "Snake River Redemption" stunt in Jackass 3D -- watch the clip here... Meanwhile, Steve Carell's Dinner for Schmucks character made a diorama of a mouse in a tiny Evel suit jumping some tiny buses on a tiny motorcycle...

On the family front, son Robbie did just two jumps this year (Texas in June, and Georgia in July). He announced he would jump 16 buses at London's new Wembley Stadium in May, but the deal fell through. (Evel crashed trying to clear 13 buses at the old Wembley Stadium 35 years earlier.) Still, here's a promotional photo shot in London...

Other son Kelly was instrumental in the "True Evel" exhibit that ran over the summer at Milwaukee's Harley-Davidson Museum; the exhibit will begin a tour of Europe next month. Kelly continues hawking Evel stuff on eBay -- besides the usual memorabilia, he also sells weird stuff like Evel's speeding tickets and business correspondence... I already reported that Evel's younger brother Nic died in September; September also saw the passing of Bob Truax, the guy who designed and built Evel's Sky-Cycle for his Snake River jump (and who Evel mercilessly blamed for its failure)... Then Leslie Nielsen died on Sunday -- he was a villainous drug lord who tried killing Evel in Viva Knievel!.

Not news, but something I just noticed a few weeks ago: Evel's "second career" as a painter has always been suspect, but check out the paintings above. The one on the left is a 1975 Time magazine cover; Evel's version on the right is obviously a copy (which he claimed was partially colored with his own blood). But what I never noticed before was how Evel (or, more likely, his ghost painter) turned Mother Teresa (an Indian, like, from India) into a Native American (an Indian, you know, from America)... But why? In any case, Evel titled the painting "Spirit."

Things to look out for in 2011: the Evel Knievel rollercoaster at Six Flags in St. Louis will be renamed American Thunder, ending a licensing agreement just three years after the ride opened... A new Evel biography by big-shot sportswriter Leigh Montville is due in April -- mixed feelings about that one... As usual, Robbie still half-heartedly talks about attempting his own Snake River jump... Meanwhile, this daredevil chauffeur has plans to jump his "Sky-Limo" across the Grand Canyon on Memorial Day.

Here's what I wrote about Evel on this day in 2009 and in 2008.

UPDATE - 12/19/10

Paris Hilton looked Knievel- Lawler-esque at some deal last night.

They should disinfect the saddle.

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Thursday, November 25, 2010

Gimme Gimme Gimme

Tomorrow's Black Friday, so now's as good a time as any to drop fat hints about all the weird stuff you should buy me. None of these things I can't live without, and I'd probably own 'em already if they weren't so elusive and/or expensive (or if I never got rid of some of these items in the first place). I guess it's their current elusiveness that makes them so desirable.

Like this Billiken bank, above. My grandma had one of these, which her dad bought her at the 1909 Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition. I don't know whatever happened to it, but I don't think I'd want any other than that one in particular.

I used to have these bitchin' Batman View-Master reels, which aren't all that rare, and that I can re-experience here and here (albeit without the stereoscope action). Still...

I also used to have a Mariners inaugural 1977 season program, like this one. These are always on eBay, except the one I want: it's from the first ballgame I ever went to, sold during the June 3-4-5 Cleveland series. It profiled Seattleite-turned-Indian Paul Dade, and had a photo feature of the first-ever M's triple play -- Reynolds to Meyer to Jutze.

Also on the baseball tip, I'd go for a vintage Pilots pennant or any other such ephemera - a pocket schedule, a scorecard, a media guide or a yearbook. But it's all too expensive.

All the heshers at Sequoia Junior High wore this KISW tee (most likely purchased at the Squire Shop, along with a pair of James Jean painter pants). Now I want one too.

Also on the rock 'n' roll tip, this Girl Trouble Live CD. The only time I ever saw one was at Fallout, but I passed on it that day. Haven't seen it since.

I'm also missing issues 1-9 and 11-13 of Wig Out!, Girl Trouble's self-produced fanzine, along with issues 1-9 and 11 of Roctober, a whole heap of Murtaugh back issues (featuring Tony Millionaire's Batty comics), and Motorbooty #2. I haven't even seen a picture of this issue, making me wonder if it ever even existed... This is an ad from around that era (circa '89) -- if it did exist, perhaps that's what the cover looked like?

Finally, I've mentioned before that I want a Six Million Dollar Man Bigfoot, but I wanna Beastie Boys Bigfoot even more. Supposedly just 70 of these were released in 2004 to promote "Triple Trouble" -- the figure wears an apron, just like in the video.

Alright, I gotta be at Mervyn's at 4 a.m... Let the war on Xmas begin!

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Now I've Seen Everything #13: Slayer Xmas House

This is fucking killer. Here are the lyrics, if you want to sing along:

Trapped in purgatory
A lifeless object, alive
Awaiting reprisal
Death will be their acquisition

The sky is turning red
Return to power draws near
Fall into me, the sky's crimson tears
Abolish the rules made of stone

Pierced from below, souls of my treacherous past
Betrayed by many, now ornaments dripping above

Awaiting the hour of reprisal
Your time slips away

Raining blood
From a lacerated sky
Bleeding its horror
Creating my structure
Now I shall reign in blood


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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sweet-Ass Simulations

Above, what Husky Stadium will look like by the 2013 season, after its $250 million renovation. Below, what Tacoma's Cheney Stadium will look like next season, after its $30 million renovation...

Lastly, what the proposed tunnel to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct will look like, after its $900 bazillion construction...

This is my favorite simulation of the three, but I hope it doesn't become a reality.

12/3/10 UPDATE

Above, what Vancouver's BC Place Stadium will look like next year, after its $150 million renovation. Below, what Portland's PGE Park will look like next year, after its $31 million renovation (it's not a video, but click here for a somewhat interactive simulation)...


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Rolling Stones Rolling Stones

Sent this photo of Keith Richards and Bill Wyman to Paul Lukas, who today wrote on his awesome Uni Watch blog, "I’m not sure which is worse -- the foot fouls, the poor lane courtesy (you should always wait until the guy in the adjacent lane has tossed his ball), or Keith’s missing cigarette."

He also came up with the why-didn't-I-think-of-it phrase, "Rolling Stones rolling stones."

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Way To Go, Felix!

King Felix wins the Cy Young.

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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Now I've Seen Everything #12: The Bill Wyman Metal Detector

As if we needed any more convincing that former Rolling Stone Bill Wyman is completely lame (see Mandy Smith, (Si, Si) Je Suis un Rock Star, this, and I haven't even started Stone Alone yet), here comes the Bill Wyman Signature Metal Detector... "Come and join Bill Wyman in the greatest hobby on Planet Earth"... No thanks.

Possibly the silliest endorsement since James Brown Cookeez.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Stupid Postcard Alert

Got this in Wednesday's mail from my State Farm agent. Though I appreciate that he hired a skywriter, a photographer, a printer and so forth just to tell me "I really appreciate your business," two things stick out:

1. Though we're married, Eliza and I have different last names, so I'm the only Mandich in the house.

2. Even if we did share my last name, we'd be Mandiches, not "Mandichs." I wonder how he might handle the Jones family, or the neighbors Homer Simpson calls the Flanderseses?

Anyway, it's the thought that counts. Thank you, State Farm agent!


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

We Hardly Knew Ye: Dave Niehaus

My oh my.

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Friday, November 05, 2010

New Flickr Set: Rolling Stones Logos

My ongoing Stones obsession is spiking once again, thanks to Keith's new autobiography and long-awaited DVD releases of Let's Spend the Night Together and Ladies and Gentlemen, The Rolling Stones, all arriving in the past few weeks.

So I made this.

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Monday, November 01, 2010

Way to Go, Giants!

Congrats to my favorite National Leaguers, finally winning a World Series for San Francisco!

Watching tonight's game, Eliza astutely commented how much my fellow UW alum/favorite current pitcher Tim Lincecum looks like Dazed and Confused's Wiley Wiggins. A quick search found that others noticed too, what with their respective slight builds, long hair, and weed doobie bong smoking. This Wiggins interview addressed the resemblance, while others have noticed similarities to Ferris Bueller's uptight pal Cameron and badass Bear Kelly Leak.

Still, I couldn't help but make my own side-by-side comparison, with the above photos I snapped off the TV tonight... Bring on the riots!


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